Aug. 3 2020

10 Questions to Ask Before Starting a Bathroom Remodel

by Bennett Bottorff

Have you ever wanted to begin a bathroom renovation but became so overwhelmed and confused as to where to start that you put it off entirely?

A bathroom remodel is a perfect opportunity to change it up and bring your vision to life, but there are a few questions to ask yourself before you get started to ensure the final product is everything you need it to be.

   1.      Why do you want to remodel your bathroom? 

What is the motivation for the remodel? Is it outdated or does it no longer function properly? What is it about the bathroom that no longer works for you?  Take some time to figure out what’s driving the idea of remodeling your bathroom before getting too far into the design process.

   2.     What do you like about your bathroom?

Is there a key feature you like about your current bathroom you want to preserve in your new bathroom?  Do you like the lighting, the height of the countertop, or the available storage in the vanity?  Think about all the bathrooms in your house as you consider these questions.

   3.     What do you dislike about your bathroom?

What drives you nuts about your current bathroom?  Is the showerhead too low or too high? Is there not enough storage, or are there too many drawers and not enough doors?  These questions can help you to prioritize which features you’d like to change in your new space.

   4.     Who will be the primary user of the bathroom?

Think about who will be using the bathroom to help you whittle down your choices.  For example, if kids will be using the bathroom, you may want to have the countertop at a lower height or a faucet that’s easy to control. 

   5.     How many people use the bathroom daily?

Will you need two sinks or just one?  Lots of storage or very little?  Looking at how many people will be using the bathroom each day will help you answer these important questions when it comes to the function of your bathroom.

   6.     Do you want a shower, tub, or maybe even both? 

If the bathroom in question is the master, if adults will mainly be using the bathroom or if there is already a tub elsewhere, think about installing a walk-in shower.  Most people tend to take more showers than soak in a tub, and open shower designs are more customizable and easier to access.  As a bonus, walk-in showers can take up less room than a standard size tub.

   7.     Do you need a bigger bathroom or one the same size?

Do you feel cramped and dream of more room to relax? If your bathroom plans require more space, you create that space by moving walls, downsizing adjoining rooms, or carving out space from existing closets.  The upside of expanding a bathroom means you’re no longer bumping into your spouse while getting ready for the day, and a fantastic bathroom increases resale value.  The negative?  Such remodels are pricey and will extend the time needed to complete your project.   

   8.     How much should you invest in a new bathroom?

Cost Vs. Value 2020 is an independent report put out by Hanley Wood that compares the cost of 22 remodeling projects (including 5 Bathrooms) specific to the Seattle area.  In the report, the average cost of a bathroom renovation ranges from $25K basic remodel to $106k for one that involves taking on more space. A link to the guide can be found on our website along with our Kitchen & Bathroom Pricing Guide, which we’ve compiled from past projects at

   9.     Should you change the location of the fixtures?

It depends. A lot can be gained from changing the locations of the plumbing and/or electrical fixtures, but these decisions all have a significant impact on both the cost and duration of the project.

   10.  What does your dream bathroom look like?

Most clients can’t envision exactly what their renovated bathroom will look like.  Start a Pinterest Board or a Houzz Ideabook like we encourage our clients to do, and start filling it up with anything that catches your eye.  One pro tip: add comments to each picture that details why you added it; two months later, when you are reviewing your Ideabook, you’ll be glad you did!. 

Bonus Question

 What is one non-negotiable feature you must have?  Once you know the answer to this question, use it as your guide while incorporating additional features into your remodeling plan.

Need help designing or constructing that perfect bathroom? Contact us; we’d love to walk you through the process.


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